Monday, December 31, 2012

Last Post of the Year...

...and we're using it to wish you a Happy New Year!


2012 was an interesting year for sharks.  There were ups and downs, but with the new protections for whale sharks in the Pacific and the fully protected shark sanctuaries in French Polynesia and the Cook Islands, the year definitely is ending on a high.  2013 is lining up to be another interesting year. 

In just over two months we'll all be in Bangkok, Thailand calling for shark and manta ray protections at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.  Even if you can't join us there in person, we hope you'll lend us your voice by participating in the Shark Stanley and Friends Campaign.

Stay safe tonight.  You are more likely to be killed by a drunk driver than be killed by a shark.

Introducing Manta Reina!


Guest Blog
by Leah Meth


Shark Stanley has a new friend, Manta Reina. She has heard his call to help protect sharks and rays at the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) in Bangkok this March. Manta Reina has left her tropical home to tell the world how important it is to help save manta rays from unsustainable international trade. Reina is a reef manta, Manta alfredi, one of the two species in the genus Manta proposed for Appendix II listing at CITES. Manta rays are listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species as vulnerable and are threatened because of the demand for their gill rakers, which is used as an ingredient in herbal remedies.

Manta Reina Downloads:
Manta Reina - 8.5"x11"
Manta Reina - A4
Large Manta Reina Cutout
Manta Reina en Español 

Just like Shark Stanley, Manta Reina is traveling around the world to find friends who will support shark and manta ray protections at the upcoming Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) meeting in March in Bangkok, Thailand. If you would like to help her with this mission, you can print this picture of her, cut it out, and take a photo with her anywhere you wish. Shark Defenders is compiling the photos from around the world to share on ourblog and web pages, and sending them to governments voting at CITES.

Visit Shark Stanley's Homepage for Downloads of all his friends.

Shark Defenders caught up with Manta Reina and asked her, at the end of 2012 to tell us 12 things about herself, the threats to her species and why she’s joining Shark Stanley:

Photo: Neil McCarty
  1. I’m a member of the Mobulid family, which has 11 species including us reef mantas and the larger oceanic mantas. My wingspan can reach up to 5m! My oceanic manta cousins are even bigger, reaching 7m.
  2. Despite being one of the largest creatures in the ocean, I’m a plankton eater and prefer the tiniest organisms living in the sea!
  3. My mouth has evolved perfectly to filter tiny zooplankton, using my sieve-like gill rakers. The big cephalic lobes around my mouth help filter this food. Check out these pictures and videos of me and my friends and feeding together – humans always tell me how acrobatic we are!
  4. A lot of humans don’t know that we’re very intelligent: in fact, we have the biggest brain of all 32,000 species of fish!
  5. I live mostly a pelagic life out in the open ocean throughout the tropics and sub-tropics, but often visit reefs to meet other mantas, feed and get cleaned. My oceanic manta cousins are more migratory, so you even find them sometimes in temperate waters.
  6. I reach sexual maturity relatively late in my life (15-20 years old) and don’t have many young over my lifetime – we can only have one baby every 1-3 years. This means that I’m very vulnerable to overfishing and my species is slow to recover.
  7. My species has been thriving in the oceans for 4.8 million years! Unfortunately, I’m facing a lot of threats out there in the ocean today from human activities. We get entangled in fishing lines and nets, and most recently, the gill raker trade has reached unsustainable levels.
  8. The estimated number of mobula and mantas rays caught every year is 94,000 and 3,400 respectively.
  9. This is dangerous because humans don’t really know that much about the size of the global manta ray population.
  10. A manta ray is worth more alive than dead: divers from all over the world come to see us, bringing in over US$100 million every year from tourism revenues. On the other hand, the gill raker trade is valued at only US$11 million per year.
  11. In fact, the value of one live manta ray throughout its whole lifetime is US$1 million!
  12. You can help protect me by joining the Shark Stanley campaign and taking a photo with me. My friends at Shark Defenders will make sure that your CITES country representative sees these unique petition “signatures” and hears your call to protect sharks and manta rays!
Photo: Neil McCarty
Leah Meth is a masters student at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and Contributing Editor at Shark Defenders.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Shark Stanley Still Looking for Friends in 150 Countries

Guest Blog
by Onon Bayasgalan

During the past two weeks since the Shark Stanley project was launched, we have had people sending in photos from 27 countries! Leah and I have been awed by the creativity that people have poured into their photos, and we both agree that Shark Stanley has already seen more of the world than the two of us combined. We are very pleased with the results, but we still have to reach out to every single Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species member countries with which we hope to establish relations. We have made partnerships with amazing organizations such as Shark Savers, The Coral Reef Alliance, Mundo Azul, Shark Aid UK, Shark Rescue, and many more. These partnerships and collaborative efforts are truly what make great campaigns. In that spirit, our daunting task of acquiring the support of all CITES countries is a challenge we know can face!

Supporters in Canada, Mongolia, Mexico, and the United States were some of the first to send in their photos. This is not surprising since I come from Mongolia, Leah from Canada, and we both go to school in the USA. We encourage you to keep on sending in photos if you are from any of these countries. More importantly, you can also continue to help out by connecting us to people living in the 150 countries that we haven’t found support in yet.

Here are a few facts that will you help understand which countries we are missing:
  • There are 51 countries in the Middle East and Africa where Shark Stanley has yet to visit. He has supporters in South Africa and Egypt, but we hope he can travel across the continent and find even more.
  • Shark Stanley still has to visit 37 countries in Europe. He already has photos from people in Austria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Sweden, and the UK.
  • South America and the Caribbean will also be a key region for shark protections at CITES. Friends from Brazil, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Honduras have already taken their photos with Stanley, but there are 27 more countries he needs to visit.
  • Shark Stanley still needs to make more headway in Asia. He has made friends in Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mongolia, the Philippines, and South Korea, but there are 31 more countries he is dying to visit.
  • Shark Stanley will also have to hopscotch across Oceania. He has already been to Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and Palau. Now he needs to visit Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu.
There are only 63 days until CITES begins and Shark Stanley will have to visit on average three countries per day if he is to reach his goal of finding supporters in every country. He can only accomplish this with your help!

Onon Bayasgalan is a masters student at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and Contributing Editor at Shark Defenders.  

Friday, December 28, 2012

Shark Conservation Win of the Year

Cooks Islands: A safe place for sharks
Earlier this month the government of the Cook Islands declared their 1.9 million square kilometer exclusive economic zone a shark sanctuary.  In taking its shark policy from one of no management to full protections, the Cook Islands' declaration of the shark sanctuary was the boldest shark management decision of 2012.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Gemma Atkinson and Shark Stanley

Gemma Atkinson is not Mr. Bean's daughter.
Shark Stanley met English celebrity Gemma Atkinson over the weekend -- his second celebrity endorsement.  You can follow along with the Adventures of Shark Stanley on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Mongolia Supports Shark Stanley

Shark Stanley is looking for at least 20 people living in every country to take their photo with him to show their support for listing sharks and manta rays at the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).  The photos will be used for a unique kind of petition that literally shows the faces of shark conservation.  Using the very best of the submitted photos, each country will get their own page in Shark Stanley Petition Pages showing the photos their citizens took (the best photos will be taken in front of iconic landmarks...hint, hint).

The people of Mongolia are the first to provide Shark Defenders with enough photos to complete their country's page.  Once finalized, their page in the Shark Stanley Support Pages will look something like this:
Mongolia Supports Shark Stanley
Shark Defenders will send a hard copy of this page and once finished, a digital copy of the entire Shark Stanley Support Pages to Mongolia's representatives to CITES:

Mr. ENKHBAT Donchinbuu
Director General
Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism of Mongolia
Government Building-2
United Nation's Street
ULAANBAATAR - 210 646
Email: d_enkhbat @ mne.gov.mn; enkhbat_num @ yahoo.com

Ms. BAYARKHUU Sandagdorj
General Secretary of National Bio-Safety Committee
Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism of Mongolia
Government Building-2
United Nation's Street 5/2
ULAANBAATAR-210 646
Email: bayarkhuu @ mne.gov.mn; bayarkhuu2002 @ yahoo.com

Mr BATBOLD Dorjgurkhem
Director, International Cooperation Division
Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism of Mongolia
Government Building-2
United Nation's Street 5/2
ULAANBAATAR - 210 646
Email: dbatbold @ mne.gov.mn ; batbodo @ yahoo.com

Dr Tsesrenjav Janchiv
Scientific Authority for CITES
Institute of Biology
Mongolian Academy of Sciences
ULAANBAATAR 51

If you are one of the hundreds of people who submitted your photos to us, we encourage you to also submit your photo directly  to your country's representatives.  Photos coming directly from constituents will have a greater impact.  Names, addresses, and emails can be found on the CITES website

Thank you and congrats to the people of Mongolia.  With 1 Shark Stanley Petition Page draft complete, there are 176 to go!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Tiburón Stanley dice: “!Ayuda a protejerme!”


Stanley y sus amigos jugaban en su arrecife,
cuando vino una red de pesca y los atrapo.
Al fin lograron escapar, pero pronto vieron con pena
Que no habia tiburones! Y que su hogar estaba vacío y desolado.

Ahora Stan y sus amigos buscan, por todo el mar,
desde Bali a Brasil y Bangladesh a Belice
buscan gente que quiera defender su causa y provocar un gran movimiento
diciendole a todo el mundo, ¡Ayuda al Tiburón Stanley a proteger los mares! 

¡Hola amigo! Mi nombre es Stanley y actualmente estoy viajando alrededor del mundo para encontrar amigos que me acompañen en Marzo para apoyar la conservación de los tiburones y rayas en la Convención sobre el Comercio Internacional para Especies Amenazadas de Fauna y Flora Silvestres (CITES). Para ayudar, puedes descargar este PDF de mi imagen, imprimirlo y recortarlo. Después tomate una foto con el recorte, adjuntando tu nombre y de donde eres. Sube la foto a Facebook con la etiqueta @SharkDefenders o a Twitter o Instagram con la etiqueta #SharkStanley. También puedes mandarla por correo electrónico a info@sharkdefenders.com o a la autoridad CITES del lugar donde vives.

Los organizadores de esta campaña están compilando fotos de alrededor del mundo para construir una petición original que será enviada a los gobiernos participantes en CITES. Nuestras fotos favoritas serán compartidas en nuestro blog y a través de las redes sociales. ¡Ayúdanos a alcanzar nuestra meta de lograr asociarnos con al menos 50 organizaciones y celebridades y recolectar 5000 fotos de los 176 países afiliados a CITES!

Take Shark Stanley Home for the Holidays

I wonder how many airports Shark Stanley can visit in one week?
All it takes is for one person in each CITES member country to take Shark Stanley around to visit a few friends and local landmarks and we'll have enough photos to put together our petition representing the whole world.  Our goal is to have 20 people from each country take their picture with Shark Stanley.

So will you help?

Visit Shark Stanley's homepage, print his image, cut him out, and start snapping photos with your smart phone.  Email the photos to us at info@sharkdefenders.com and upload them onto Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram tagging #Shark Stanley, @SharkDefenders, and the country where you live (i.e. #USA, #Brazil, #Fiji).  Have some fun with your photos and we'll post the best ones on our Facebook page and blog.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Adventures of Shark Stanley: The First Few Days

Onon Bayasgalan is from Mongolia.
Shark Stanley started the week in New Haven, Connecticut with Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies student Onon Bayasgalan getting ready to launch his campaign to traipse across the globe looking for people to support shark and manta ray protections at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).

Leah Meth is from Canada.
He then swam from the East Coast to the Hawaiian Coast where he met up with Leah Meth and a friendly green sea turtle, a species already listed on CITES.  Leah is Onon's classmate at Yale (we don't know what school the turtle attends). Together with some help from the Pew Environment Group, Leah and Onon came up with the vision for the Shark Stanley campaign and worked with artist Dan Yagmin Jr. to create illustrations to represent the shark and ray species being proposed for CITES listing next year.

Students from Malaking Pook National High School
After Hawaii, Stanley kept on heading west until he came across the students at Malaking Pook National High School in Batangas Province, Philippines.  The students took photos of Stanley with their classmates, teachers, and parents and sent them in to show their support.

We won't say which airline, but their service is first class!
And then a very friendly flight attendant took Stanley to his next destination...

Follow Annie Anderson on Twitter @SharksNeedLove
Downtown Swingin' London!  The lovely Annie Anderson from Sharks Need Love took Stanley to the premier of 'The Double.'  Stanley also got his picture taken with Jessica-Jane Clement -- his first celebrity endorsement -- and posted the photo to Instagram.

In the first few days of his campaign to protect sharks and rays at CITES, Shark Stanley has visited the United States, Canada, Mongolia, Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, Philippines, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Taiwan POC, South Korea, Germany, and Singapore (and maybe a few others that we're forgetting).  His goal is to visit all 177 CITES member countries (the Maldives became a party to CITES today, raising the number from 176) and he needs your help to get there.

If you have friends living around the world, please tell them about Shark Stanley and share his homepage so that when the CITES meeting begins in March, Shark Stanley can honestly say he has the support of people in every country around the world.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Shark Stanley Needs Your Help

Take your photo with Shark Stanley and post it to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Guest Blog
by Leah Meth

We’re excited to announce the launch of Shark Stanley, a charismatic little hammerhead traveling the world to help protect sharks and rays! He’s the cornerstone of our grassroots campaign, a collaboration between two graduate students at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, the Pew Environment Group, Shark Savers, and Shark Defenders.  We aim to provide engaging and creative educational tools to mobilize youth support for shark conservation and ensure that our voices are heard on the international stage.

Leah Meth and Shark Stanley.
The idea is simple: cut him out, take a photo with him and send it our way! We’ll compile the photos across our social media platforms and make sure that key decision makers internationally see them. To accompany the cut-out, we will be releasing an educational children’s activity book in January, The Adventures of Shark Stanley and Friends, which will be available for free on Shark Defenders.

Before we tell you more, we’d like to talk about why we’re doing this campaign, starting with the threats to sharks and why it’s such a critical time for shark conservation.

SHARKS AT CITES
In March 2013, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna (CITES) meeting will take place in Bangkok. With 176 member countries, this multilateral agreement protects more than 30,000 species globally and plays a powerful and key role in preventing extinction of many plants and animals by ensuring sustainable rates of trade.

There are three shark proposals and one manta ray proposal on the table for Appendix II CITES listing:
  • The Scalloped Hammerhead Shark, one of the most iconic and endangered shark species with some of the most valuable fins in the market. Listed as Endangered globally on the IUCN Red List, hammerheads often aggregate, making them even more vulnerable to overfishing.
  • The Porbeagle Shark, a large, warm-blooded temperate water shark targeted for both its large fins and meat. Their populations have been reduced by around 70%.
  • The Oceanic Whitetip Shark, an open ocean species with large, highly valued fins; Critically Endangered in parts of it range and Vulnerable globally.
  • Oceanic and Reef Manta Rays, some of the most stunningly charismatic wildlife in the oceans. Listed as Vulnerable globally, they have been targeted in recent years for an emerging international market for their gill rakers, which they use to filter plankton. Some populations have declined by as much as 85%.
At the CITES meeting in 2010, the passing of several shark proposals was only narrowly missed, needing only a small number of votes to pass. 2013 will be their year at CITES: the science is crystal clear, now we just need to do everything we can to make sure our country’s representatives vote YES!

SHARK STANLEY’S JOURNEY TO BANGKOK
Ensuring shark and ray protection at CITES will be Shark Stanley’s first global campaign. As he and his friends prepare to head to Bangkok, we plan to have him reach every one of the 176 CITES member countries. Using viral social media, Shark Stanley photos will appear across all our platforms, from Facebook and Twitter, to Pinterest, Instagram and Tumblr. Our goal is to partner with 50 organizations, aquariums and NGOs internationally to gather at least 5000 photos from 176 countries, as well as photos from key celebrities and big names in marine conservation. Stayed tuned: we’ll feature our favorites across our social media platforms and will be offering give-aways and prizes over the next two months!

Onon Bayasgalan and some of our supporters with Shark Stanley.
These photos will provide a way for you to actively engage in shark conservation. Acting as “signatures,” they will be part of a creative petition that will diverge from traditional approaches. The internet has plenty of shark petitions, so our goal is to create something new to complement other campaigns by providing an educational tool that will go beyond a signature, providing a charismatic character that young people (and the young at heart) can build their own relationship with while making meaningful links with youth around the world as they share their own Shark Stanley adventures. Shark Stanley’s new friends will compile photos according to country in compelling visual mosaics, which we will send to all 176 representatives and display at the CITES meeting.

We will show the people in charge of voting for these proposals that there are thousands of passionate supporters, in their country and globally, that demand shark protection! We invite you to join us to Help Protect Shark Stanley!

Everyone can help with this!
  • You can start by sending us your Shark Stanley photo. Downloads and simple instructions are here.
  • If your organization would like to partner with Shark Stanley at CITES, put a link to this page on your website, then email us your logo and five photos of your friends with Shark Stanley to info@sharkdefenders.com. We'll post your logo and link to your website on a special sponsors' page.
  • If you work with kids in schools, aquariums, museums (wherever!), we’d love to provide our activity booklet for free or help you to design a workshop on shark conservation.
Leah Meth and Onon Bayasgalan are masters student at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and Contributing Editors at Shark Defenders.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Polynesia Regional Shark Sanctuary

As of 12-12-12, French Polynesia, Cook Islands, American Samoa, and Tokelau all have in place domestic measures banning the sale, trade, possession, and commercial fishing of sharks in all waters under their jurisdiction.  If you were to add up all the ocean inside of those white lines, this area would be roughly the size of Australia.  Is this the beginning of a Polynesian Regional Shark Sanctuary?  And how about Micronesia, the leaders of which recommitted last week to a regional shark sanctuary?  Is a Pacific Shark Sanctuary looming in the future?

12-12-12: A Good Day for Sharks

Please Share, Tweet, and Pin to show your thanks!

The Cook Islands  created a 1.9 million square kilometers shark sanctuary in their ocean today. The Mayans were wrong -- today wasn't the end of the world, it was the beginning of the end of the overfishing of sharks!

The sanctuary, encompassing an area the size of Mexico, is the result of a partnership between Shark Defenders Pew Environment Group and the Pacific Islands Conservation Initiative, and had the support of many local community and political leaders. Hundreds of signatures were collected on a local petition, and students submitted letters and drawings bearing the message “Akono Te Mango (Protect Our Sharks).”

"We are proud as Cook Islanders to provide our entire exclusive economic zone (EEZ), an area of 1.9 million square kilometers as a shark sanctuary,” said the Honorable Teina Bishop, Cook Islands minister of marine resources when he made the announcement today. “Together with our Polynesian neighbor, Tahiti Nui (French Polynesia), we have created the largest shark sanctuary in the World. We join our Pacific neighbors to protect this animal, which is very vital to the health of our oceans, and our culture."

“We’re very proud to stand together today in celebration for sharks and for the community,” said Stephen Lyon, director of the Pacific Islands Conservation Initiative. “It further establishes the Cook Islands, which has already declared both a whale sanctuary and a marine park, as a world leader in marine protection.”

“This is hopeful news for the world’s sharks and our efforts to protect them,” said Jill Hepp, director of shark conservation for the Pew Environment Group. “We are thrilled to see the Cook Islands become part of this global movement during a time when so many shark populations are threatened.”

The Pew Environment Group has more information on their website.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

French Polynesia Shark Sanctuary

Green campaigners on Friday hailed a decision by France that they said would create the world's biggest shark sanctuary.

On Monday, the government of French Polynesia included the mako, the last shark that was not protected in its waters, on the list of fish banned from capture or trade in its vast territorial zone in the South Pacific.

The move was announced on Thursday at the annual meeting of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission meeting in Manila, where nations also agreed to take steps to protect whale sharks from tuna nets.

"At more than 4.7m km² of ocean, this designation doubles the size of the area already protected by all six existing shark sanctuaries," said Josh Reichert, head of the Pew Environment Group.

But, he said, "sharks are threatened throughout much of the world's oceans, and there is a great need to protect them before they slip below levels from which they may never recover".

According to conservation group WWF, about 73 million sharks are killed every year, mainly for their fins - a practice that has brought a third of shark species into the category of threatened, or near-threatened, with extinction.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Victory for vulnerable whale sharks

Please Share, Retweet, Like, and Pin this image
Asia and Pacific nations agreed at a meeting in the Philippines on Wednesday to take steps to protect whale sharks in a victory for the world's largest fish, officials said.

Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission nations agreed that tuna fishers must stop setting their nets around the vulnerable giants in order to catch smaller fish that gather underneath them, said Palau fishing official Nanette Malsol.

She said the deal binds tuna-fishing nations such as the United States, China, and Japan, and was a victory for a coalition of small Pacific nations, called the Parties to the Nauru Agreement, that has been campaigning for this measure.

"This rule follows negotiations by the Parties to the Nauru Agreement for three years to try and get the big fishing nations to adopt protections for whale sharks," said Malsol, who also heads the coalition.

The small Pacific island nations said they already imposed such a rule on their own tuna fishers.

Smaller fish like tuna congregate under whale sharks, so fishermen often seek the giants and set their nets under them to catch the other fish, said Angelo Villagomez, a spokesman of the the US-based Pew Environment Group.

As a result, whale sharks, which are considered a vulnerable species, often get entangled in tuna nets and die, he said.

Fifty whale sharks were recorded having died from tuna nets in 2010 and 19 in 2011, said Villagomez, adding that there were likely many other cases which went unreported.

Parties to the agreement reached at the Manila meeting Wednesday must free any whale shark that gets caught in their nets and must also record and report any incidents involving the giant fish, Malsol said.

The Pew group, which is also attending the meeting, is pressing for other measures to protect 143 other threatened species of sharks that are affected by tuna fishers.

However Villagomez said he doubted they would pass as some fishing countries actively catch these sharks.

Whale sharks measure as much as 12 metres (39 feet) long but are harmless to humans and feed on tiny marine animals. They have become popular tourist attractions in countries such as the Philippines, Mexico and Australia.

Published by AFP on Thursday, December 6, 2012.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Progress at the WCPFC

Fishing port in Manila.
Delegates to the 9th Regular Session of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission in Manila, Philippines were asked to describe how the week long meeting was progressing in one word or one sentence.  The following lists the answers in the order they were received.  Enjoy.
Rough. Complex, long, and too much air-conditioning. Watching Paint Dry. Good. Lame. Informative. Very Informative. Nowhere to land. Need to aim for only sustainable fishing. Great shirt. Save tuna. Very successful. Inspiring. Tiring, but worthwhile. Stepless. Glacial disappointment. Tense. Very manageable. Glacial pace. Yes we can! Longwinded. Slow. We will get a measure in place! No option. Hard work for another year. Slow. Very exciting. Unbelievable. Too many appeals and too little progress. Great. Turn the switch! Hard. Awesome and exciting. No fishing for tuna and dolphin for five years. Effective in business. Wonderful discussion. Frustrating. Still an issue to address coastal water issue. No FADs. Well attended. Flipped the switch. PNA needs to stand up for the fisheries. As expected. Very interesting. Nice discussions and opinions. Yay for whale sharks. Love our environment. Need to conserve. A great initiative for a sustainable fishing in the Pacific. No illegal fishing. Very good! Unity for all member countries. Save the tuna. Gratifying. Heated and spirited exchanges. Very good. Great work. Whale shark. Awesome. Slow. I think some of the points are not discussed well enough by members. Knowledgeable. Bloody. A lot of issues to be solved. Development of tuna business. Good luck. Frustrating! No efficiency. Informative. Bad: FADs and no reference points. Good: CMMs. For tomorrow’s tuna. Hopeful. Very interesting. Lousy. A big help to solve problems especially on the part of high seas. Awesome. Still a lot of work to move forward. Do better to monitor. Better to protect tuna. Great. Huge hall, excellent arrangement. Challenging and interesting. LRP and TRP is a must. Mind draining. Make decisions. Awesome. Decisions! Mabuhay WCPFC! Save tuna. Save tuna. This WCPFC successful. Tiring. Bullshit. Just hope they close the pockets. Direction. Get serious. Management of tuna in WCPFC. Will WCPFC care for albacore before it’s too late? Very interesting. Conservation of tuna. Better to protect. Nobody cares about the fish. Not enough! Mabuhay! Absorbing. Tiring. Fun. Success. Just talk, no action. Frustrating.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Pacific Nations Alarmed by Tuna Overfishing

Angelo Villagomez of the
Pew Environment Group
shows a sample of a line
 and hook.

MANILA, Philippines — Pacific island nations and environmentalists raised an alarm Sunday over destructive fishing methods and overfishing that they say are threatening bigeye tuna — the fish popular among sushi lovers worldwide.

Palau fisheries official Nanette Malsol, who leads a bloc of Pacific island nations, said at the start of a weeklong tuna fisheries conference in Manila that large countries should cut back on fishing, curb the use of destructive fishing methods and respect fishing bans to allow tuna stocks to be replenished in the Pacific, which produces more than 60 percent of the world’s tuna catch.

The annual meeting of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission, which regulates commercial fishing in the vast expanse of waters from Indonesia to Hawaii, is to approve steps aimed at protecting the bigeye and other threatened tuna species, along with giant whale sharks. More than 600 delegates from about 40 Asian and Western countries, along with environmental activists, are attending.

Malsol said she expects heated debate. Proponents of the multibillion-dollar fishing industry have squared off with conservationists in the past over the best ways to protect the bigeye and other species without considerably setting back the lucrative business.

Read the full story on the Washington Post.
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